Monday 23 November 2020

Laura Reviews: The Mermaid, The Witch and The Sea by Maggie Tokuda-Hall

I'm sure I'm not alone when I say I've had this book on my TBR for longer than I should have and if it wasn't for the wonderful Bookstaholics anonymous book club on Instagram choosing it as their book club read, it might have taken me even longer. Now I'm happy to report this is one of my favourite reads of the year.


My love of fantasy has definitely come back this year and The Mermaid, The Witch and The Sea ticked all the fantasy boxes. 

This book tells the story of Evelyn Hasegawa and imperial, who is about to face a long sea voyage to marry a man she has never met. On board the ship, she befriends Florian, a gender fluid pirate, who has been assigned to guide her. Florian/Flora along with the rest of the crew has a great hatred towards imperials, but they can't help but be drawn to Evelyn with her quick wit and caring nature.

Little does Evelyn know that the ship she is on is actually a pirate ship that will soon turn their passengers into slaves and sell them off. As Florian/Flora and Evelyn's friendship blossoms, Florian/Flora's resolve to do as the other pirates has been told, begins to weaken and she wants to save Evelyn from fate of slavery. 

I don't think I could have loved this book more if I tried. The story was engaging 100% of the time, the characters were really well crafted and also inclusive at the same time. This became one of those books I just couldn't wait to dive into at every opportunity. There was never a dull moment with every chapter bringing something new and unexpected.   

I would have been hard pressed to predict any outcome and the ending was just perfection. I was lucky enough to get to be in a group chat with Maggie to discuss her book and she revealed something very exciting, but I'm not sure if I can say yet.

A fantastic, action packed and wonderfully inclusive read. I loved it so much, I even got one of the quotes from the book framed in a necklace. 

The quote reads: "There's freedom in stories. We read them and we become something else. We imagine different lives and while we turn the pages, we get to live them".

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